If you have seen the trailer for ‘Nefarious’, it is easy to dismiss this film as just another cookie-cutter horror movie to be released during the spring season. You would be making a serious mistake by thinking that way.
What if I were to tell you that is a Christian film within the horror genre?
Some of you may react negatively because one of the biggest criticisms about modern Christian films is that the portrayals of real life are so uplifting that it borders on parody. Rarely do you see a Christian film or even a modern Christian sermon that covers the topic of sin.
Whenever anyone shines a light on the evils that consume our world every day, people tend to get uncomfortable In the face of defined definitions of right and wrong. As a result, most Christian content won’t even highlight society’s issues Of immorality because it’s much easier to win more people over being uplifting rather than being truthful.
By this point, we are all used to seeing the Blum House style of horror films about a cliché portrayal of demons. A mediocre plot highlighted by cheap actors that leads to a solid 90 minutes of jump scares. The genre has become so formulaic that audiences don’t even react to it due to its repetitiveness in the industry. ‘Nefarious’ is a film that takes a different path altogether.
At face value, this looks like any other secular horror film that you would see in movie theaters within the coming attractions.
The premise of the film is about a man sitting on death row awaiting the last moments of his life after committing a horrible murder. The man (Sean Patrick Flanery) claims to be a demon and demands to speak with a psychiatrist named Dr. James Martin (Jordan Belfi) who arrives to sit down with him in order to make the judgment that he is fit to withstand execution.
The man who refers to himself as Nefarious tells the doctor that by the end of the day, James will be responsible for the death of at least three people. James refuses to believe his story until the man who sits in front of him reveals that he knows far more about his life than he ever anticipated.
Whether James wants to believe it or not, he is in the middle of a hostile encounter that will cost multiple people their lives if James does not make the right decision and caves to the demon’s demands.
If I were to tell you that this was a Christian film you would be reluctant to believe it but Nefarious it’s one of the most creative films about faith and the spiritual war on our souls to come out over the last few decades.
By now everyone reading this has heard of the term culture wars when describing the effects that entertainment has on our society. ‘Nefarious’ lives by the Creed that we are not in a culture war but a spiritual war for the souls of every human being.
Forget everything you know about modern horror films when discussing this movie because the rules of secular Hollywood do not apply here.
Nefarious is a thinking man’s movie that relies on the human fears of mortality while questioning the humans views of morality. Sean Patrick Flanery, It’s menacing as the character of Nefarious who was able to sell the seriousness of the plot just by making audiences question whether he’s telling the truth about who he is.
Flannery’s character does not rely on camera tricks and jump scares but rather his ability to make Believers and non-believers question their own morality in the face of direct confrontation.
‘Nefarious’ is a character study of the absence of faith and the destruction of it and how one plays until the hands of another even if it’s unwillingly. Jordan Belfi plays a psychiatrist who is the straight man for this supernatural encounter and his character represents the secular world coming to terms with the evil that they helped create.
The majority of the film takes place in a one-room two character bottle that relies on gripping audiences with character-to-character storytelling in order to sell the effectiveness of the story.
The only downside here is the last 10 to 15 minutes of run time that loses its momentum once the one on one character dynamic has been removed from the equation. This causes the story to drag on creating the cinematic equivalent of a rough Landing to an otherwise smooth flight.
They’re not going to be very many films released in 2023 that is going to make you think on the level of ‘Nefarious’. A film that is entertaining it’s also going to force members of his audience on both sides of the aisle to confront what side of the battle between good and evil they are truly on.
All things considered ‘Nefarious’ is one of the best movies to come out in the early portion of 2023.